A couple or three years ago, it was a common thing for me to head over to Staples on Saturday mornings to grab some kind of breakfast sandwich, see if the Staples or Brainerd Sub had anything much going on, and check out the yard and depot. Somehow I've gotten out of that habit. Today seemed like a good day to do it again, if only for old times sake. Cloudy skies nearly cancelled the trip, but when Mrs. L4T looked out and said the sun was shining I flew into action. After a stop at Holiday for vittles, it was off to the races.
My first train was this eastbound, holding at the Dower Lake station sign on Main 2. With the crossing blocked, it sounded like they were in a hurry to move, but the dispatcher told them to be patient. I got a shot anyway, to record the power:
A westbound was waiting as well, this one just before the switch for the Brainerd Sub. Since no attractive photo angles were in play, and the yard looked to have some interesting stuff, I passed right by. However, when I was shooting some of the yard trains they started to pull and I got this backlit shot under the clouds as they passed the depot.
When the sun peeked out, I managed to grab a shot of the trains in the yard. Here you can see a trio of Dash 9 led eastbounds waiting to head for Northtown and destinations beyond. Gotta love that H1 paint!
After that I swung over to the Depot, where renovation is still underway. A conversation with a caretaker clued me in that the ticket agent's room will soon house the Staples Chamber of Commerce. They are making progress.
I was waiting for the eastbound I had shot earlier to come by, and finally he did. The dispatcher had crossed him over to Main One at Dower Lake and he passed the depot on the near track, under stormy skies that the Mrs. informed me were producing rain in Wadena almost from the time I left.
After that, with ATCS showing nothing and rain approaching Staples, it was off for Wadena, where I set to work on a custom built grain bin that may some day approach completion.